As hundreds of thousands of visitors arrive in Atlanta for Super Bowl 53, local residents should plan to deal with a few inconveniences.
The Los Angles Rams will take on the New England Patriots on Sunday, Feb. 3 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium but other events scheduled leading up to the game will bring fans in days early. The crowds and security will require a smattering of road closures, some of which have already begun, and will also impact parking and transit schedules.
Fans who hope to tailgate will need to lose the cooler and wings — it will require a whole new approach for the biggest game of the year.
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There’s just no getting around it: anyone traveling to the Super Bowl should use MARTA. The Atlanta Super Bowl host committee is urging people to take transit to the game. For those new to riding MARTA, see our how-to guide here.
MARTA is selling its commemorative Super Bowl Breeze cards for $2 in addition to the cost of a fare or day pass. Riders can purchase a one-day pass for $9, a three-day pass for $16 and a four-day pass for $19. One-way fare is $2.50.
The transit system will also expand its bus and rail schedules during Super Bowl week: From Jan. 29 to 31, bus service will run 5 - 1 a.m. and rail service will run 4 - 1 a.m. From Feb. 1 to 4, bus routes 15, 39, 83 and 196 will run continuously.
MARTA trains will run 24 hours a day from 4 a.m. Feb. 1 to 2 a.m. Feb. 5. The street car will also operate every 9 minutes on Feb. 3.
For those who drive to MARTA, free daily parking for customers who park for fewer than 24 hours at the following stations: Brookhaven/Oglethorpe, Chamblee, College Park, Doraville, Dunwoody, East Point, Lakewood/Fort McPherson, Lindbergh Center, Medical Center, North Springs, Sandy Springs and West End.
Long-term parking is available for customers who park longer than 24 hours at the Brookhaven, Dunwoody, Lenox and Sandy Springs stations for $5.
Customers can also pay $8 for every 24-hour period for long-term parking available for at the following train stations: College Park, Doraville, Lindberg and North Springs.
Parking and Ride Shares
Riders taking a Lyft or an Uber will be dropped off in a lot near the stadium. For post-game pickup, patrons will need to go to the downtown corridor or take MARTA to the Georgia State University train station.
If you insist on driving your own vehicle to the game, it’ll cost you. Patrons driving cars or SUVs will have to pay $100 for parking. Those traveling in a limousine, luxury or sprinter van must pay $200. Those driving in a mini bus or bus must pay $250 and $300, respectively.
And even at those prices, parking in designated game lots is only available to Super Bowl ticket-holders. All parking passes must be printed at home and presented to an attendant at the lot. There are no shuttles to or from any of the parking decks.
Drivers will have 11 designated parking lots from which to choose.
Another reason why MARTA may be “smarta:” road closures — four of them began Monday.
Martin Luther King Jr. Drive is closed between Northside Drive and Centennial Olympic Park Drive until Feb. 7. Baker Street between Centennial Olympic Park Drive and Luckie Street is closed until Feb. 8.
Mitchell Street between Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and Elliot Street; and Mangum Street between Markham and Foundry streets will also be closed until Feb. 7.
Andrew Young International Boulevard will be closed between Marietta Street and Centennial Olympic Park Drive starting Wednesday until Feb. 7.
Other road closures include Peachtree Street between Ponce De Leon Avenue and 3rd Street beginning 1 a.m. Feb. 1. The closure will end 5 p.m. Feb. 3.
One southbound lane on Northside Drive will be closed from Jan. 26 to Feb. 2 so contractors can build a security fence surrounding the perimeter of Mercedes-Benz Stadium in preparation for the game.
Northside Drive between Ivan Allen Jr. Blvd and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive will be closed Feb. 2 -4. After game day, a southbound lane on Northside Drive will be closed until Feb. 7 while contractors break down and remove the security fence. Both southbound lanes will also close each night.
For more information on road closures, visit https://atlsuperbowl53.com/roadclosures/ or visit the Georgia Department of Transportation’s website.
If you planned to do traditional tailgating at Mercedes-Benz Stadium’s typical spots, think again.
“You don’t quite have the same experience of fans driving up to the game and tailgating in the back of car like you would for a regular season game,” chief operating officer with Atlanta Super Bowl host committee Brett Daniels told the AJC.
Daniels said parking lots generally reserved for tailgating will be used by Super Bowl personnel.
That doesn’t mean there won’t be any tailgate-style parties. The host committee has planned a week of Super Bowl-related events for fans looking for fun. Fans will get a taste of tailgating events starting at 5:30 p.m. Jan. 28 with Super Bowl Opening Night at State Farm Arena. The media event allows fans to meet Super Bowl players and coaches and get autographs.
Other events include the Super Bowl Experience at the Georgia World Congress Center. Described as the the NFL’s interactive “theme park,” fans can train like an NFL player with a mock combine and have access to the NFL Network’s player interviews. Attendees will also get to take a picture with the Vince Lombardi Trophy and get autographs from NFL players and legends.
Adult tickets are $20, and children 12 and under, $5. Attendees who purchase an adult ticket between Jan. 28 and 30 will get three complimentary tickets for children.
The fan experience will be held Jan. 26 to Feb. 2 with varying hours each day. Those with a ticket to the game will have access to the Super Bowl Experience 2 - 5 p.m. on game day.
Football fans can also enjoy some tailgating fun for at the Super Bowl Live. The event held at Centennial Olympic Park is free and requires no ticket.
If you’re looking for a pricier pre-game experience, ticket packages can be purchased through On Location Experience, the official hospitality partner of the NFL. The company partners with each team to host pregame events that are attached to the ticket packages.
But that’s if you have $3557.50 just lying around. And that’s just the starting price.
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